Breakout Sessions

Our team of tenured church leaders, instructors and administrators look forward to spending dedicated time with conference participants in various workshops and interactive instruction. The overall commitment of IC3 is to provide focused study in areas most essential to remarkable church growth, sustenance and individual leadership development. Below you will find a list of breakout sessions led by those with exceptional backgrounds in each area of focus.

Please note breakout sessions are subject to change.

IC3 Talks | Tuesday

Join Christopher Hartwell, R. Janae Pitts-Murdock, and Charlie Dates for dynamic and engaging hot topics in ministry

I Am A Woman | Tuesday

Janae Pitts-Murdock, MS, M.Div., Senior Pastor, Light of the World Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN

Visionary women have influenced and shaped who the Church is and who the Church is becoming.  This session celebrates the significant contribution of visionary women across Christian movements and centers voices often pushed to the periphery.  Each participant will critically reflect upon their own contribution to the Church of today and tomorrow and chart a path forward for greater impact.

Decolonized Faith  | Tuesday

Charlie Dates, Ph.D., Senior Pastor, Progressive Church, Chicago, IL

Untangling faith from white liberal and conservative supremacy.



Is Jesus Crying Now? | Tuesday

Christopher Hartwell, D.Min., Senior Pastor, Crossroads Community Church, Pearland, TX

From His weeping then, to His weeping now. Has anything changed?

Apologetics, Preaching, Theology, Social Justice

Womanist Ways | Tuesday

Yolanda Pierce, Ph.D., Dean, Howard University School of Divinity and Professor of Religion & Literature and Womanist Theology 

How does womanist theology help us to thrive and survive? What does womanist theology have to say about power and agency? Join for a discussion of how academic theology can impact and support the work of those in the pews, in the pulpits, and in politics.

Preaching Christ with Intentionality | Tuesday

Romell Williams, Jr., Senior Pastor, The Progression Church, Chicago, IL

Moving into the experience of our listeners isn’t enough. We must meet them where they live, and then escort them to Christ. He alone sympathizes and empathizes with our pains because He has fully endured life. Preaching with intentionality will strengthen your resolve to make the most of Jesus in the midst of this.

Embracing the Revolutionary that Lives Within Us to Overcome Enduring Turbulent Times | Tuesday

Jennifer Jones-Austin, CEO of the Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies (FPWA), New York, NY

Together we will examine some of the most pressing issues of the present day, including structural and institutional racism, intergenerational poverty and wealth disparity, policing and violence and voting rights access: and what it means to embrace the spirit of God the Revolutionary and the teachings of Jesus as faith leaders and communities, and put our faith into action to confront and overcome these persisting challenges. Our discussion will explore critical questions such as roles and responsibility of the church, and particularly the Black church, in fighting for equality and equity, and whether charity and justice are competing or cooperative aims.

Back to Church! Rethinking Preaching and Ecclesiology | Tuesday

Jerry M. Carter Jr., Ph.D., Senior Pastor Calvary Baptist Church, Morristown, NJ; President of the African American Clergy Association of Morris County 

As numbers of people are returning to in person worship and as some people are remaining remote in worship, it is time to accentuate and reconsider the nature of “church”. This course will consider some creative ways to preach and think about what it means to be the church in 2022.

Light Up Your Sermon with Windows: Illustrations That Sparkle | Wednesday 

Dr. Joel C. Gregory, Ph.D., Holder of the George W. Truett Endowed Chair of Preaching and Evangelism at Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary

In this distracted age your sermon illustrations need to sparkle with specific detailed engaging illustrations and lived experiences. Learn when, where, and how to find memorable illustrative material that intrigues listeners and keeps them in the sermon.

This is NOT Your Grandmother’s Church: Preaching That Makes an IMPACT | Wednesday

Charles E. Goodman, Jr., D.Min., Senior Pastor, The Historic Tabernacle Baptist Church, Augusta, GA

Learn how to critically and practically engage the art of preaching through a contemporary lens that reaches multigenerational audiences.

Addressing the Times Without Compromising the Word| Wednesday

A.B. Sutton, Jr., D.Min., Senior Pastor, Living Stones Temple, Birmingham, AL

A responsible interpretation of scripture leads to a clear-eyed and thoughtful examination of the times from the perspective of God’s Word.

Back to the Future | Wednesday

Claybon Lea, Jr., Ph.D., D.Min., Senior Pastor, Mount Calvary Baptist Church, Fairfield City and Suisun, CA

This workshop will focus on the post-pandemic ministry perspective and progression of the church. What does post-pandemic church look like? Holding Jeremiah 6:16 and Mark 2:21-22 in dialectical tension, we will explore how the church can retain and regain the ancient paths without putting new wine in old wine skins.

Black Lives Matter to Jesus | Thursday

Marcus Jerkins, Ph.D., Senior Pastor, Resurrection Baptist Church, Silver Spring, MD

It is important to note how important black life is to God in times when black lives are seemingly meaningless. This session will equip pastors to empower their churches with the biblical text to inform their churches of God’s love for them in the skin He gave them. This course will also help pastors and leaders combat pernicious errors which teach that Christianity is the white man’s religion.

Preaching in the Metaverse: Illustrating the Sermon in the Post Pandemic Era | Thursday

Lawrence E. Aker III, S.T.M., Th.M., Senior Pastor Cornerstone Baptist Church, Brooklyn, NY

Preaching the Proctor Method to a Contemporary Audience | Thursday

Kelon Duke, D.Min., Executive Pastor, New Jerusalem Primitive Baptist Church, Miami, FL

This class will take a look at Dr. Samuel DeWitt Proctor’s preaching method and show how it is a very relevant approach to communicating to a Post-Pandemic pew.

Navigating the Shifts in Preaching | Thursday

Christopher Hartwell, D.Min., Senior Pastor, Crossroads Community Church, Pearland, TX 

Rethinking how to practice consistent movements, illustrations, and accurate interpretation in biblical preaching that will engage virtual and gathered communities. 

Woke: The Pastor as Resident Theologian | Thursday

LaKeesha N. Walrond, Ph.D., President, New York Theological Seminary, New York, NY

The murder of unarmed African American men and women sparked a world-wide awareness of social justice inequity in the United States. What does it mean to “do justice, love mercy and walk humbly,” in the 21st century? This class will examine the connection between Christianity, Social Justice and the preaching and teaching power of the Pastor.


Community, Evangelism, Missions, Outreach

How to Reach the Masses! | Tuesday

Dr. Phillip L. Pointer, Sr., D.Min., St. Mark Baptist Church, Little Rock, AR 

Exploring hybrid opportunities for local evangelism and worldwide missions. Finding ways to inspire congregations to fulfill the Great Commission through “Likes and Shares.” 

Christ & Culture: Reaching the UnChurched and Impacting Your Community | Tuesday

Steven E. Carter, Mount Ararat Baptist Church, Brooklyn, NY

Learning proven ways to attract the unchurched to your church in an ever-changing culture without compromising the message of Jesus Christ! Regardless of your context, as long as you have Christ, Creativity, Consistency, and Committed Disciples, your ministry can continue to GROW!  Come and learn 7 actions that have helped many congregations reach the unchurched.

Transforming Communities with Christ | Wednesday

George E. Hurtt, M.Div., MPH, Senior Pastor, Mt. Sinai Church, Los Angeles, CA and New Revelation Missionary Baptist Church, Pasadena, CA

Those who attend this session will be confronted concerning the need to be truly a community church. It is incumbent that the issues facing families and generations are known and addressed. This means giving more than social commentary like some so called “evangelicals,” but creatively creating ways to impact people for the glory of Christ.

When the MAIN dish becomes the SIDE dish! | Wednesday

Emory Berry, Jr., D.Min., Senior Pastor, Greenforest Community Baptist Church, Decatur, GA

Over the past 2 years, churches everywhere had to pivot due to the negative impact of the COVID-19 virus. As a result, many churches were left to shift to virtual worship in lieu of in-person services. Additionally, the way ministry is delivered has changed dramatically. This course will explore new yet Biblical practices, methods, and systems churches can implore in efforts to reach others for Christ.

Creating a Church That Makes a Difference | Thursday

George L. Parks, Jr., D.Min., Senior Pastor, New Hope Baptist Church, North Little Rock, AR. 

This session is designed to answer the question, “What is the church doing during the pandemic?” Unique strategies to meet the demands and needs of families and communities will be provided to strengthen the global witness of the local church.

Taking Jesus to the Streets | Thursday

J. Lawrence Turner, D.Min., Senior Pastor, Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church, Nashville, TN

This breakout group will show how Christ’s ministry was not just about the people, but also about the people. Thus, our must be empowered to go with the gospel. This includes, but not limited to, knowing the needs, hurts and challenges of the community. Then created programs and events that minimizes those challenges. 

Generational Ministries

How to Redesign, Rebuild and Restore Your Church’s Youth and Children’s Ministry- Hybrid Church is Here to Stay! | Tuesday

Tyrone Smith, Youth Minister, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX, President, First and Goal, Inc.

The global pandemic has presented a great challenge for ministry leaders that serve and support children’s and youth ministries around the world. We have all been challenged to redesign, rebuild and restore our ministries. This session will cover details and logistics to better help children and youth leaders understand the Hybrid model (offering both an online and in person option) is based on you redesign, rebuild and restore your ministries for today and beyond.

Identifying the Needs in Every Man | Tuesday

Keith W. Reed, Sr., D.Min., Senior Pastor, Sharon Baptist Church, Philadelphia, PA


Return and Rebuild from the Remnants! | Wednesday

Rosalind Burroughs, Ed.D., Minister to Children, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX 

Are you crying out in anguish as Isiah did over Israel?  As ministers and leaders we have been stretched beyond the breaking point over the past two years.  Nevertheless, we know God’s word is true and more alive than ever before.  Come and be inspired to trust in God’s sovereignty as we explore how to return and rebuild our ministries from the remnants of what once was.

Be Daring:  Facing Uncertainty with Faith | Wednesday 

Ruth Williams, Mosaic Women’s Leader, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

As many of our local congregations return to in-person worship, we will be challenged to rethink ministry.  What needs will returning worshippers have?  How do we create women ministries that meet the diverse needs of an in-person and virtual congregation?  How do we reach the unchurched woman?  As we reimagine ministry together, we are clear on one thing, “maintaining the status quo or doing nothing” – is NOT an option.  Join the conversation as we discuss why change is inevitable.


Reaching Millennials and Gen Z | Wednesday 

Bryan L. Carter, D.Div., M.A., Senior Pastor, Concord Church, Dallas, TX 



When Women Lead… | Thursday

Brenda A. White, Director of Ministry, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

Women have influence, authority, vision, leadership qualities, and spiritual giftedness to add value to any room they enter. No matter how others view you, God wants to use you to make a difference in the body of Christ. What might God do with you if you didn’t put restrictions on yourself? Who might you be able to serve? With God’s help, what victories might you be able to win? Whenever women leaders rise up and fulfill their calling, the people they serve are blessed. Join us to discover how you can maximize your spiritual influence in any leadership circle.

Building Bridges for Children and Youth  | Thursday

Rosalind Burroughs, Ed.D., Minister to Children, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX
Tyrone Smith, Youth Minister, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX; President, First and Goal, Inc.

Winning young souls for Christ is the goal, and the target is clear!   As a team, we work collaboratively to ensure the children of our church reach spiritual growth milestones by fifth grade and high school.  In this session, participants will have the opportunity to explore the intentional systems and processes found in the KWOW-IGNITE year at a glance showcase. 

Pastoral & Leadership

Called? Crazy? or Both? | Tuesday

Jewel M. London, Campus Minister/Pastoral Assistant to Dr. Ralph D. West, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

Serving in ministry can be both joyful and challenging. Leading with the right motive, building productive teams, navigating competing personalities, handling criticism and unrealistic expectations, and avoiding imposter syndrome – will at times cause you to question whether God is in the midst of all of this. Join me in this second installment of “Lessons From My Father” to hear some of the basic, fundamental, and yet greatest lessons I’ve learned while serving in ministry. This session is designed for pastors training leaders as well as persons serving on staff, serving as ministry leaders, and as volunteers.

Leading in Transition | Tuesday

Danielle L. Brown, D.Min., Senior Pastor, Shiloh Baptist Church, Plainfield, NJ

In this workshop we will discuss important keys to successfully leading your congregation through transition and change. If you are new to your context or your context is in need of renewal, this session is for you.

Pass the Baton | Tuesday

Ralph D. West II, Th.M., Campus Minister, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX



Donald Hilliard, Jr., D.Min., Bishop, Cathedral International-The Historic Second Baptist Church, Perth Amboy, NJ

The call of pastoral leadership is a gift that keeps on taking. We all need a voice that can see beyond the borders of the arenas in which we serve. The relationship between Elijah and Elisha offer a textbook model of how leadership can help us face the harsh realities of this hour. While challenges abound, you have unseen help to get you through.

Managing Leadership Pain in a Healthy Manner  | Wednesday

Cynthia Hale, D.Min., Senior Pastor of Ray of Hope Christian Church, Decatur, GA 

The challenges, isolation and overwhelming expectations of ministers can lead to anger, frustration, discouragement and even depression. They are all emotional and mental issues that constantly need to be addressed and managed for us to stay healthy. 

Introducing and Maintaining Change in Your Congregation | Wednesday

Andre Lewis, D.Min., Senior Pastor, New Faith Church, Houston, TX 

This class will give you practical tools to strategical implement change in your congregation and develop healthy support from your leadership teams. 

Practices of a Thriving Pastor | Wednesday

Anthony L. Riley, M.Div., Senior Pastor, Central Baptist Church, St. Louis, MO

There is a secret sauce to thriving in ministry during a pandemic. This workshop will share best practices for leading and living well in crisis. Share what you have experienced and define tangible steps to position yourself and your ministry for the next season.

The Future is Faster Than You Think | Wednesday

William H. Curtis, D.Min., Pastor, Mount Ararat Baptist Church, Pittsburgh, PA

Examining ministry post-Covid.

Fighting The Virtual Virus in The Midst of a Pandemic: Social Media Overload | Wednesday

Ralpheal D. West, Th.M., Campus Minister, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

This session is an exposition of virtual challenges through the lens of ministerial leadership. We will study together on how to find the balance between utilizing and overloading.

Navigating Politics in the Pulpit, The Pulpit and My Pastoral Calling | Thursday

Calvin McFadden, Sr., Ph.D., Founder, Cornerstone Community Church, Houston, TX 

Faithful pastors can hardly avoid social and political issues if they expound the full teaching of Scripture. This session will help pastors learn how to do so in ways that are constructive and helpful while being true to principles of pastoral leadership. 

Five Fuels to Re-ignite Stalled Ministry Engines | Thursday

Paul D. Landrew, Senior Pastor, Loving Word Fellowship Church, Houston, TX

Stalls can be frustrating because they generally happen between the place you are leaving and the place you are going.  Stalls are temporary and must never be treated as permanent. Re-fuel, re-ignite and return to the race, not against others but against the opposition to your purpose and assignment. 

The Lead that the Leader Has | Thursday

William H. Robinson, Ph.D., Senior Pastor, The Olivet Church, Fayetteville, GA

If as behaviorists say, new habits are formed after only twenty-one days of practice; what new habits have been formed by being away from “in-person” worship for over 700 days. Undoubtedly, church as we have known has changed- and maybe forever. What questions must we ask to renew people’s engagement? 

Candid Conversations with Maurice Watson | Thursday

Maurice Watson, D.Min., Senior Pastor, Metropolitan Baptist Church, Washington, DC and Largo, MD

What questions do you have about leadership, ministry, pastoring, or preaching? With over 45 years in ministry and extensive preaching experience, Dr. Maurice Watson is a wealthy resource of information and is ready to share. This is a great opportunity to get all of your questions answered by one of the premiere leaders in our country.

We’ve Chosen Poorly: The Way of the Carpenter and the Way of the Visionary | Thursday

Michael A. Walrond, Jr., M.Div., Senior Pastor, First Corinthian Baptist Church, Harlem, NY

Christianity is in decline. Could it be that the decline, in part, can be attributed to Christianity and its theological assumptions? In this class we will examine the difference between Christianity and the way of the poor Jewish Galilee and carpenter.


Pastors’ Wives

Panel Discussion: Swipe Right…Swipe Left | Thursday

Sheretta West, Minister to Women, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

Will you swipe right to accept, or swipe left to reject?  Navigating the ebbs and flows of ministry life can be overwhelming for the Pastor’s wife.  Covid-19 has added another layer of challenges to this labor.  How will you support your husband pastor during this covid season, preaching to two congregations?    How can you dream again?   How will you adjust to this new season?  There are real changes and new perspectives to discover.  Join this panel discussion and gain valuable tools that will help you reimagine ministry life.

Staff, Membership, Church Advancement, Discipleship

Manners & Money | Tuesday

C.Lynn Brinkley, D.Min., Adjunct Professor, Campbell University College of Arts and Science and Associate Director, Baptist Women in Ministry

How much should you pay the preacher? What is the appropriate pulpit attire? Do I call you “Doc, Rev. Dr. or Minister? When is a sermon too long? Dr. Gardner C. Taylor once said, “there is a crying need to address etiquette in the pulpit.” Join this session as we discuss matter of pulpit etiquette and hospitality.

A New Church? Wait… Folks Still Go to Church? | Tuesday

Gabby Cudjoe Wilkes, M.Div., M.A., Lead Pastor and Andrew Wilkes, Co-Pastor, The Double Love Experience Church, Brooklyn NY

At a time when people are clear about God bur unsure about church, now is an excellent time to re-imagine how to serve a new population of people who love God and love people but are skeptical about the institution of the church. Skepticism doesn’t mean disinterest. It means heightened and hyper vigilant interest. Join this session for some best practices around how to launch and/or lead churches that serve people well and meet the needs of our time. 

Jumping On A Moving Train | Tuesday

Mary Myles, Executive Assistant to Dr. Ralph D. West, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

How do you join a ministry at full throttle? Please join me as I share principles of how to acclimate and assimilate when you are new to the culture, ministry and work environment. Also, I will share my experiences and key tips that help me daily in supporting a high-level, high functioning executive and Pastor.

Throw the Box Away: Moving Beyond Cookie Cutter Discipleship | Tuesday

Leah Jackson, M.Div., Associate Minister, Ray of Hope Christian Church, Decatur, GA

The key to strategically building an effective Christian Education program lies in truly understanding the personality and the needs of your congregation. This course is designed to equip pastors and leaders with a clear plan of action by evaluating current systems, identifying areas of strength and weakness, selecting the right staff and choosing high yield approaches to best meet the needs of the church.

Tips, Tricks, and Best Practices for Membership Management | Tuesday

Crystal Nelson, Assistant to the Church Administrator/Membership Management, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX
Daniel Williams, Church Administrator, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

How do you safeguard your member records? What is the best way to conduct volunteer background checks? Are membership tracking systems really necessary? If so, how can we benefit from them? Join us for industry tips, tricks, and best practices for managing your membership information.

What’s Your DNA? | Tuesday

Erica McDonald, Executive Assistant to Dr. Cynthia L. Hale, Ray of Hope Christian Church, Decatur, GA

DNA is defined as the distinctive characteristics or qualities of something. Your DNA is what makes you uniquely gifted to serve as an Executive Assistant. This session will explore the EA role as a calling and how you can use this calling to improve your serve. 

PANEL DISCUSSION: The Balancing Act | Wednesday

Tracie Cavitt, Executive Assistant to Pastor Bryan Carter, Concord Church, Dallas, TX
Lisa Rattler, Executive Assistant to Dr. Jeffrey A. Johnson, Sr., Eastern Star Church, Indianapolis, IN
Simone Clark, Executive Assistant to Dr. Freddy Clark, Shalom Church, City of Peace, St. Louis, MO
Erica McDonald, Executive Assistant to Dr. Cynthia L. Hale, Ray of Hope Christian Church, Decatur, GA, 
Mary Myles, Executive Assistant to Dr. Ralph D. West, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX
Alisha Trusty, Executive Assistant to Dr. Frederick D. Haynes III, Friendship-West Baptist Church, Dallas, TX
Ashlyn Williams, Executive Assistant to Dr. Claybon Lea, Jr, Mt. Calvary Baptist Church, Fairfield/Suisun, CA

Ministry can be a consuming element and sometimes the most emotionally challenging space. Working in ministry call for special wisdom, balance and fluidity that only can be provided through God’s Word. It is essential to develop a devotional life to be effective in everything you do. 

A Million Little Things | Wednesday

Felicia Hedgepeth, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

Have you ever wondered why people go back to the same restaurant, grocery store, barber shop or why someone would wait in line at the Breakfast Club or Chick-fil-A? We are challenged to “go and make disciples.” How can we do this if we don’t recognize the little things that matter to people coming to the church. The question is, “why do we come back to church?” Join me as we discover the value of the “million little things” that matters to your church. 

Post Pandemic: How Do We Get People Back in the Pews?  | Wednesday

Rufus Smith, Senior Pastor, Hope Church, Memphis, TN

If as behaviorists say, new habits are formed after only twenty-one days of practice; what new habits have been formed by being away from “in-person” worship for over 700 days. Undoubtedly, church as we have known has changed- and maybe forever. What questions must we ask to renew people’s engagement? 

MMBB Financial Wellness: “Fixing Your Finances for the Future” | Wednesday

William H. Foster, Jr. MBA, M.Div., DMin., Director, Marketing and Strategic Relationships

This course will offer you a peace of mind and financial security.  You will learn strategies and tactics on how to adequately prepare for retirement so you will be able to retire with dignity.

Rethinking Stewardship in Ministry | Thursday

Jeffrey A. Johnson Sr., Senior Pastor, Eastern Star Church, Indianapolis, IN 

In the midst of these challenging times, we have been pushed to a place that as Christian leaders we must rethink, reimagine and reinvest when it comes to the vital ministry of stewardship. In this presentation we will investigate principles from the word of God and proven practices which will put your ministry in a better position to minister to the people in your church and community. There has been a tremendous increase of need in black and brown communities throughout our nation who continue to look to the church to help them through periods of crisis. Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has given us the responsibility to come alongside the least, the lonely and the left out. We must rethink our approach to stewardship, reimagine our strategies of stewardship and reinvest in our communities to offer hand ups and not just handouts. 

Practical Ways to Make Disciples and Assimilate New Members | Thursday

Aaron F. Dallas, Sr., M.Div., Campus Minister/Minister to Men & New Members, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

Discover practical ways to involve key leaders by pairing them up with a new member for one year. The desired outcome is to create a continuous cycle of making disciples for Christ by teaching them to disciple others.

Creating a Staff that Cares | Thursday

Vernon Walton, D.Min., Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church of Vienna, Vienna, VA

Work, work, work! What is our work absent of the people who serve? This session equips staff to develop and maintain sensibilities to the church’s most valued asset – it’s member and the lost. A staff intentionally focuses on the needs and rewarding experiences for its partners and friends, facilitating an environment of growth and hospitality.

Understanding the Mindset of Congregational Care in 2022 | Thursday

James C. Harris, Jr., M.Div, Minister, Pastoral Care, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX

Theodore Roosevelt once said: “People Don’t Care How Much You Know Until They Know How Much You Care.” Certainly in the times in which we are living, with all the challenges that people are facing mentally, physically, socially, emotionally, economically, to name a few, it is paramount that we need examine how we care and love our congregants in order them to grow spiritually as well personally.  This session addresses the importance of Pastoral Care anew in how we rethink our approach and how we must be resourceful and relational to persons who are hurting as we support our Senior Pastor during these unprecedented times.

A New Niche—Finding New Ways to Serve | Thursday

Jamaal Weathersby, Senior Pastor, New Hope Baptist Church, New Orleans, LA 

Seasons change and so do our interest and effectiveness. Shifting roles is not quitting ministry. This course will teach staff members and volunteers that evolving is essential to effectiveness. We will discuss how to sense when it is time to give up an old responsibility in the church and how to be comfortable serving in a new capacity.  


Rethinking Rest: An Adaptive Model of Distress Tolerance | Tuesday

Fredricc Gerard Brock, D.Min., Lead Pastor, The Message Church, San Antonio, TX 

What do you do when you are not able to completely step away and deal with highly emotionally charged moment? How do you cope when it seems that a sabbatical is not a viable option? This session will explore biblical and peer-reviewed strategies for daily management of actual and perceived stress in ministry. 

Divorced Yet… Finding Healing and Wholeness After Divorce | Tuesday

Lisa Clayton, D.Min., Senior Pastor, Mt. Zion Baptist Church of Boonton Township, Boonton, NJ

So often divorce is associated with feelings of defeat. As leaders, this feeling is amplified as we struggle with the pressure of being the models for those we lead. This workshop will help the divorced leader with how to heal while they still help others; as well as help leaders to minister to those who’ve experienced divorce.

Balance Before Burnout | Wednesday

Carlos L. Kelly, M.Div., Senior Pastor, Beulahland Bible Church, Macon, GA

The demands of Ministry can become overwhelming and cause both Pastors and Ministry leaders to work to the point of burnout.  This session will provide strategic and practical tips to be effective in ministry while maintaining spiritual, physical, mental and emotional health. 

Come, Let Us Rest Awhile; Sabbath and Sabbaticals as Part of Biblical Leadership | Wednesday

Frank A. Thomas, Ph.D., Director, Ph.D. Program in African American Preaching and Sacred Rhetoric and the Nettie Sweeney and Hugh Th. Miller Professor of Homiletics, Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis, IN

Have you heard of a pastor going on sabbatical? Have you thought about a sabbatical? Have you decided that you could never take a sabbatical? Come and hear interesting perspectives on Sabbath and Sabbatical from a biblical and practical perspective? We will discuss why a sabbatical is necessary and possible according to the Scriptures. 

Who Ministers to You? Spiritual Wellness for Women in Ministry | Thursday

Neichelle R. Guidry, Ph.D., Founder, Black Girl Black Coffee, Dean of Sisters Chapel, Director of WISDOM Center, Spelman College, Atlanta, GA 

Are you a woman in ministry? Are you experiencing exhaustion in your role? In this workshop, Rev. Dr. Neichelle Guidry, Dean of Chapel at Spelman College, will provide principles and practices for spiritual wellness of today’s leading woman. 

Worship & Arts

We’ve Come This Far By Faith | Tuesday

Kenneth Green, Minister of Music, Gethsemane Baptist Church 
Earnest Lofton, Minister of Music, Lilly Grove BC, Houston, TX  
Kathy Taylor, Gospel Recording Artist, Houston, TX 

Exhibiting and sharing our faith through community outreach, church visitations, outdoor music festivals, musicals, and video partnerships. Engaging with Universities, schools and social justice movements with singing to empower, encourage, and reach the unchurched.

Objective: Our faith has brought us through difficult times: music ministry allows us to encourage, comfort, and share the Gospel through music to an unchurched and/or hurting world. Historically, music has played an important role at social justice movements/human rights marches, funerals, graduation celebrations, and community events. How can Worship & Arts Leaders maximize efforts to be impactful at times when sharing with community members outside of our immediate fellowship?

Worship & Arts Panel: Lift Him Up! | Tuesday

Kenneth Green, Minister of Music, Gethsemane Baptist Church
Earnest Lofton, Minister of Music, Lilly Grove BC, Houston, TX
Kathy Taylor, Gospel Recording Artist, Houston, TX

Ensuring versatility of musical selections for multigenerational and ethnically diverse communities (Hymns, Choral, Traditional and Contemporary Christian Music)

Objective: Going into the world and making disciples of all nations is what Matthew 28:19 commissions.  How can music ministries effectively reach diverse audiences while following the Pastor’s vision for worship services?

Lead Me Guide Me | Wednesday

Michael L. McFrazier, Ph.D., Dean and Professor of the Whitlowe R. Green College of Education, Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, TX and Associate Music Minister, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX 
James E. McKnight, Worship & Arts, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX 

Addressing Planning Thematic Worship vs the Liturgical Calendar while following Pastoral Vision and Leadership.

Objective: God leads and instructs the believer in Colossians 3:16, to “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Songs following Thematic Worship concepts may intersect with the Liturgical Calendar, and sometimes not.

It Takes Two: Word and Worship | Wednesday

Timothy Sloan, D.Min, Pastor, The Luke Church, Houston, TX
Chad Brawley, D.Min., Worship & Arts Pastor, The Luke Church, Houston, TX

Worship in the post-pandemic church requires intentionality and flexibility in planning. Learn how Senior Pastors and Worship Pastors can partner to plan transformational worship experiences that are creative and aid in spiritual formation.

We Are Not Ashamed Of The Gospel | Thursday

Leon C. Lewis, Minister of Music, Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, Houston, TX 

Effectively executing Christ Centered worship experiences that embrace, extol and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Objectives: Impart specifics about rehearsal preparation and execution, coordination with AV teams and band to facilitate an uninhibited worship experience. Time considerations for multiple services, dress and other details necessary to execute a Christ Centered Worship Experience.

Panel Discussion: Revive Us Again | Thursday

Leon C. Lewis, Minister of Music, Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, Houston, TX 
Karen Blanton, St. Luke Baptist Church, Houston, TX 
Kenneth Myles, Director of Music, The Church Without Walls, Houston, TX 
Lydia Modest, Brentwood Baptist Church, Houston, TX 

Reengaging and training ministry volunteers for the Hybrid (i.e., Virtual and F2F) Worship Experience, Considerations for Worship and Arts Ministry Leaders Mid & Post-Pandemic

Objective: Discuss how the pandemic caused music ministries to rethink, reengage and renew growth.

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